Nonprofit organization Urban Ministries of Durham partners with advertising agency McKinney in order to create “Names for Change,” a venture that allows the renaming rights to household products.
The concept is simple: the items available at the shelter are open to be rebranded with the proceeds going towards providing homes for the homeless. The prices range depending on the product, and can vary from a jar of peanut butter to a refrigerator.
The renaming can be for oneself or can be offered as a gift for someone else. Afterwards, there is a choice to create an official poster of the given product.
From there, a serial number and certificate of authenticity is branded on the product, further immortalizing the newly named item and the step towards helping a recipient out of homelessness.
To date, the campaign has raised $41,065, enough to raise eight individuals out of homelessness.
Jenny Nicholson, the brainchild behind the naming campaign, is associative creative director at McKinney, a company part of the larger mother communications corporation Cheil Worldwide.
Hailing from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s social work master’s program, Nicholson teamed up with Urban Ministries, a homeless shelter, to start up an online game that engages the issues of homelessness.
The online game “Spent” allows players to offer a donation post-game and proposes over 169 new items to having its respective naming rights changed.
Executive director Patrice Nelson mentions the collaboration with Urban Ministries wherein the non-profit serves over 600 meals per day in its community café as well as offering community shelter, a clothing closet and food pantry.
With winter snowstorm Hercules settling in the northeast and key communities declaring Code Blue, the Durham community itself is rallying its homeless to available shelters. Durham Rescue Mission notes that alcoholism and drug addiction keep these individuals away from the shelters
The hope behind “Names for Change” is to create a permanent household that will eventually render shelters as a solution to the problem.
– Miles Abadilla